There is no denying that transportation has an impact on the environment. Although there is still work to be done, modern rules and newer, more effective technology seek to lower that cost. But what exactly does trucking do to the environment? What is the situation right now, why people are selling their trucks or having them penske truck lease, and how big is the issue?
The most noticeable transportation pollution is carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas produced when gasoline is used. Small amounts of other pollutants, some of which are greenhouse gases, are also emitted through the tailpipe. These other pollutants can be reduced by using cleaner fuel or maintaining engines, but a gallon of diesel fuel always emits little over 22 pounds of carbon dioxide.
The entire annual mileage of American vehicles is 93,512,000,000 miles, or more than a thousand times the distance from the sun to the earth. The average vehicle gets approximately eight miles per gallon, which equates to over 6 million tons of carbon dioxide annually.
The trucking industry’s contribution may not seem like much given that the US as a whole has a carbon footprint that is over a thousand times greater (roughly 6053 million tons), but trucking can be a leader within the transportation sector as a whole, and transportation accounts for almost a third of US carbon dioxide emissions.
Technically, shipping freight by truck might not be the most “environmentally friendly” option. Rail or water is superior in practically every category, including carbon emissions, other pollutants, noise, and accidents. But there are certain areas where neither rail nor water can reach. Trucking’s market share is expected to increase going forward.
By steadily increasing fuel economy, trucking is already reducing its carbon footprint. Due to their ability to invest in new infrastructure, large truck fleets have the option of switching to alternative fuels like biodiesel, allowing smaller businesses and individual drivers to benefit from the new choice. Because it is manufactured from plant materials, biodiesel produces less carbon dioxide than conventional diesel fuel because that carbon was recently removed from the environment.
Routing, driver conduct, and vehicle maintenance may all be improved by trucking businesses to increase fuel economy.